COAST-INSPIRED: Some of the ladies of Wyong Writers, Jan Forrester, Anne Neilsen, Mei-Ling Venning, Carolyn McCullouch, Yvonne Sorensen and Elizabeth McVie at the Fellowship of Australian Writers NSW annual lunch in Sydney, at which Anne and Pat Webb (absent) received certificates marking their success in the FAW/Seniors writing competition.
COAST-INSPIRED: Some of the ladies of Wyong Writers, Jan Forrester, Anne Neilsen, Mei-Ling Venning, Carolyn McCullouch, Yvonne Sorensen and Elizabeth McVie at the Fellowship of Australian Writers NSW annual lunch in Sydney, at which Anne and Pat Webb (absent) received certificates marking their success in the FAW/Seniors writing competition.

Writer's group shared stories uplifting

WHETHER you are new to the Coast or just need a reminder of the fantastic things it offers in life, Wyong Writers' new anthology could inspire you to a fresh appreciation and new experiences.

While many of the writers have published individually, Central Coast Stories of Community and Belonging is their entree into publishing for sale as a group.

Launched at the Tuggerah Library on November 16, the book comprises 23 short stories by more than a dozen local writers, and is courtesy of a grant from Central Coast Council.

The majority of the stories are fictional but all centre around the Coast, its activities, events, community and belonging, Wyong Writers publicity officer Jan Forrester said.

Set in locations from Woy Woy to Chain Valley Bay, Jan said they were "uplifting stories" about volunteering, disabled surfing, surf lifesaving, Landcare, the Dawn Service, Bay to Bay run, fishing, diving on the wreck of the Adelaide, pelican-feeding, tai chi in the park, tennis and enjoying the bush and national parks.

"It mentions almost everything that's great about the Central Coast, and we hope it will make people who haven't done some of these things be inspired to do them and see places they haven't seen," she said.

Jan is excited to have two stories in the anthology, based on her experiences volunteering as a Pink Lady at Gosford Hospital and attending the Anzac Day Dawn Service.

She said there was a real joy to her volunteer work, the people she spoke to and helped, particularly patients who may be feeling down or who were missing family and friends.

It's all part of Wyong Writers' aim to encourage people to play a greater part in their community, to be inclusive, and increase connection with the area's groups, beaches, parks and waterways.

Jan said the idea of publishing a book for public sale had grown from last November's successful limited printing of a short story anthology called Holidays just for members.

Starting in December, they gave themselves about six months to each write stories of up to 1500 words, ready for the lengthy process of editing, re-editing, layout and illustrations, and finally delivery of 300 copies.

Jan said the group, primarily Seniors, was part of the Fellowship of Australian Writers, and currently has about 25 members across a wide age range who meet on the fourth Saturday of the month at Woodbury Park Community Centre from 1.30-4.30pm.

As a member, you receive details of in-house, national and international writing competitions, as well as being encouraged and inspired by supportive fellow-writers.

To purchase the anthology, go to Book Bazaar Umina Beach, the Entrance Tourist Information Centre or contact the group.

For details about Wyong Writers, go to wyongwriters.org or phone (02) 4333 7489.


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